in the woods,
Collecting pieces of lineage 900 years past.
with words and sticks.
memories mixed in soil, mulch, and bullet casings.
Familiar faces, first timers,
Cleverness embodied in demonstrations of dexterity and skill.
stories at campfires,
monologues and meditations—
hinting at futures
and alternate pasts.
Joined in the hunt for excellence—
or giving into to the easy.
Training so that our bodies have as much strength as our spirits.
Pushing our purpose, building our will.
Falling in the mud,
finding the space, creating the opening,
finding our feet more times than we fall.
fortitude and perseverance.
Drawing on the successes of our teachers
learning from the feedback that’s all too clear.
armaments of kata—
potentials and metaphors for becoming who we long to be.
We gather sword and heart.
We find freedom in the pursuit of brilliance.
Our abilities forged in the rain and sweat.
Warriors meet on the mountain.